How do you search the silence that muffles family stories when those who knew what happened are gone? Family Treasures tells a riveting story of survival, loss, and love. This documentary and short series is not only a WWII survivor story but a second generation sleuthing adventure to uncover family mysteries.

Streaming January 12-24, 2024 https://miamijewishfilmfestival.org/films/2024/family-treasures

FEATURE DOCUMENTARY: Journalist Karen A. Frenkel channels the driving force of discovery to investigate her parents’ unspoken WWII stories. Her research leads her to astonishing revelations of her family’s incredible journeys through Europe, Cuba, Mexico, and New York, and sheds light on the hidden truths surrounding the tragic losses experienced by several of her family members. Through the act of documenting their histories, these relatives cease to be mere names, but come to life when their stories are fully uncovered. These riveting stories of survival, luck, and loss have the power to captivate viewers of all generations and serve as an inspiration for many to delve into their own family histories.

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Five-Part Series for Education

How do you do genealogical research? Family Treasures guides you though five steps: 1. Oral History: talk to people you know 2. Google Anything: have fun 3. Sleuthing Archives: get serious 4. Value of Visiting: travel to the places 5. Family Tree: see how the puzzle fits together.

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Karen's Sleuthing Background

Between assignments as a technology journalist, I googled my parents’ names. What was I hoping to find? Both were Polish Jews--one a refugee who arrived in the U.S. in 1939 and the other survived the Holocaust as a slave laborer. So much had already been written about the Holocaust. But I had access to my mother's oral history and a massive collection of inherited portraits, photographs, letters from her family’s prosperous Jewish life in Poland before WWII. These treasures inspired me to embark on my family history quest detailed in the documentary and the five-part doc series. I've also written a companion memoir.

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